Fanconi's Anemia (FA) is an autosomal recessive chromosomal instability disorder. The
symptoms include congenital abnormalities, defective hematopoiesis (formation of cells
of the blood), and high risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia and solid tumors.
Fanconi researchers have long been puzzled by how Fanconi Anemia (FA) cells, which
are known to be more likely to perish under harsh conditions, somehow morph into
cancer cells at an alarming rate since abnormalities usually cause cells to initiate
apoptosis (programmed cell death). Some findings by Dr. Bagby's lab in murine ovarian
tissue indicated that Fanconi cells were more sensitive to cytokines than wild-type cells
of that tissue type. Therefore, preliminary studies exposing other cell types to cytokines
were deemed to be useful. Studies comparing the proliferation of wild-type and Fanconi
cells after TNF-alpha, IFN-gamma, and FAS ligand exposure were conducted. These
results suggest that FAS has an effect on MEF Fanconi cells and that Fanconi cells are
more likely to induce apoptosis when exposed to cytokines than wild-type cells.
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